January 25, 2021
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Service Your Applications

  • By Sam Huggill
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Windows 95 makes using services very simple. You can setup a service simply by adding one registry key. This makes getting around Windows security issues very easy.

For example, if you set Windows to logon and require network validation, then a user must logon with a valid username and password. At this point, your program will not be running because the Windows shell (Explorer.exe) has not yet been loaded.

You can get around this by running your program as a service. Windows runs services before you have logged in, so you could setup a small service that gave you a way to get into Windows if the network was down, or you had forgotten your password.

As a service, your program does not appear in the task list, making it very difficult to close. This way you could setup a security program that monitors what the user is doing, and stop them if they do something naughty.

For this article, I created a program called Service Manager. It allows you to simply manage the services installed on your machine - edit, add and delete. The program can also be password protected, and uses the Windows password system to verify a user.

The code is based on several previous howto articles:

Verifying the Windows password
Create a registry control

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This article was originally published on November 20, 2002

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